When does Bitcoin mining end?

The end of the Bitcoin block reward will come around the year 2140 (likely a few years earlier than this due to difficulty increases).  But that won’t be the end of Bitcoin mining, as miners will continue to receive rewards for each block mined in the form of transaction fees.

The block reward is halved every 210,000 blocks, or about every 4 years.  Currently, each block rewards 25 bitcoins to the individual or pool who mined it.  By the year 2136, each block reward will only be 0.00000001 bitcoins, the smallest unit that exists.

As the block reward drops lower, miners will instead concentrate on transaction fees to make a profit, and users of Bitcoin will see significant refinement in selectivity of transactions based on fees.  In other words, fees will matter more, so miners will choose which transactions to include in a block based on how much profit it will give them.  Currently, many transactions without a fee or with very small fees are still processed, but it is likely that this “charity processing” of transactions will all but disappear in the future.

Bitcoin mining then, will never end, but the block reward should run out sometime between the year 2121 and 2140, and transaction fees will likely begin outpacing the block reward between the years 2040 and 2060.

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